“October 19, 1998 Intelligence: Late Breaking Lab News”

Specialty Laboratories continues to make inroads as a national reference laboratory. Amerinet selected Specialty as a clinical laboratory service provider. It joins LabCorp and Quest on Amerinet’s laboratory provider panel. Specialty is aggressively repositioning itself from an esoterics provider to a routine esoterics provider. Earlier this year VHA added Specialty to its laboratory provider panel.

AmeriPath, Inc. just beat the quarterly bell with two more pathology practice acquisitions. This time its Consultant Pathology Associates, Inc. of Youngstown, Ohio (15 pathologists) and Texoma Pathology Associates in Dallas (two pathologists). AmeriPath generally announces its acquisitions at the end of each financial quarter. These two pathology practices represent about $8.5 million per year in revenues.


Automated cytology technology is making its first major inroads into the clinical community. During the last 30 days, Kaiser Permanente and SmithKline Beecham Clinical Laboratories signed contracts to acquire and use NeoPath, Inc.’s AutoPap™ System for the primary screening of Pap smears.

These contracts are a significant validation of the AutoPap technology. Kaiser performs 1.4 million Pap smears per year. SBCL performs more than five million Pap smears annually. During the next 24 months, both companies intend to move all Pap smear screening to the AutoPap System.

More consolidation within the healthcare industry. This time its $16.5 billion Cardinal Health, Inc. acquiring $4.4 billion Allegiance Corporation. In a deal valued at $5.4 billion, the two companies will merge business operations. Most laboratorians know Allegiance as the former American Hospital Supply (AHS). Baxter International bought AHS in 1985. In 1995, Baxter spun off the hospital supply portion of AHS as Allegiance.

Dynacare Inc. will manage the laboratory services for Baylor Health Systems’ HealthTexas Provider Network. As part of the agreement, Dynacare will develop and manage a new lab facility in Dallas. Expect Dynacare to use HealthTexas’ 38 access points as a springboard for an outreach sales program.

Beckman Coulter Inc. will close two manufacturing plants during the next 15 months. The action affects 100 employees and involves plants in San Diego and Puerto Rico. Beckman is expected to continue rationalizing its corporate infrastructure in response to its acquisition of Coulter and other diagnostic companies in recent years.


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